The big money continues to be spread around down here in Orlando. The latest: the Rockies have signed Ty Wigginton to a two-year deal worth $7.5 million.
Wigginton is a utility guy. Sure, he got a ton of plate appearances last year in Baltimore, but that was because the Garret Atkins experiment didn’t work out. He started the season strong, but he faded as the year wore on and in full time work he was exposed, posting a .248/.312/.413.
That, apparently is worth nearly $4 million a year now. A year or two years ago Wigginton would have received a million bucks. Maybe two.
Lefty reliever Jonny Venters was among a handful of players the Rays signed to minor league contracts, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports.
Venters, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2012 and has logged just 27 2/3 innings in the minors in the meantime due to a continuous battle with his elbow. According to David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Venters has undergone four — four! — Tommy John surgeries.
When he was healthy, Venters was a fearsome late-game option for the Braves. He posted a 1.95 ERA with 93 strikeouts in 83 innings in 2010, and a 1.84 ERA with 96 strikeouts in 88 innings in 2011. His first-half performance in 2011 earned him a spot on the National League All-Star roster.
Venters has spent the last two years in the Rays’ system and he’ll try to make it a third.